The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

The Second Week

I’m not expecting to be producing 52 of these posts, but as this year is going so well thus far I am going witter away a little about the last week (albeit primarily for my own benefit of recording what I did).

In common with last week, I’ll start off with the January mileage comparison graph:


Not quite half way through the month and I’m reasonably confident (barring waking up with a leg missing or some other malady) that by the end of tomorrow I will have beaten my January mileage for six of the last eight years. In any event, it is completely unprecedented that I have achieved 14 walks by the 14 January.

The second week started on Wednesday with a city walk, shoe-horned in whilst my car was at the garage, the only remarkable thing about which being that I managed to cover 6 miles.

Thursday was slightly more remarkable, mainly due to having set out in the pitch dark, after a night of rain, to walk a route that turned out to include many a large puddle, where the lack of light meant that I couldn’t see how deep those puddles were (and obviously, whilst getting your feet wet on a multi-day backpacking trip where you have no clean socks or any means to dry out your shoes is fine, but getting your feet wet on a quick walk from home is a a complete no-no). I questioned my sanity at going out at such an hour of day, but was equally smug at returning home just after 8am having covered 4 miles.


The first hint of daylight appeared as I crossed back over the brook, which is usually a trickle, but on this day was as high as I’ve ever seen it.

Friday didn’t see me free until early afternoon whereupon I combined various water features (i.e. ponds and the canal) in a six miler. Can’t remember much about it really. Maybe I’d reached a really good bit in my audio-book such that it was holding all of my attention?

Saturday should have seen me walking somewhere that I’ve never walked before as I had an errand to run 30 miles up the road. But, as much as I tire of doing many repetitions on the same theme, on this occasion I couldn’t quite find the motivation to plan a route and explore a new area all by myself (Mick being poorly in bed). So, Saturday afternoon saw me falling back on an old favourite – the very one that I swore I wouldn’t do again until the weather had been dry for a while.

I described that previous iteration as the ‘biggest mudfest ever’. I was wrong. This time it was so much worse. Three fields of sinking in three inches on every step, with much slipping and sliding mixed in. Here’s just a sample of the state of those paths:



After Saturday’s experience, I was unduly excited to look out of the window early on Sunday morning to see a hard frost. I made like a rat up a drainpipe as I rushed out of the house before the sun had chance to hit the frozen ground and revelled in the mud-free frozen conditions.


That’s not one of the local ponds, it’s a field which forms part of the Trent’s flood plain.

The first three hours of that outing were enjoyed mud-free until finally the warmth of the day won through. That gave me just the final hour and a half in softer conditions, but fortunately quite a few of those miles were on good tow-path. The enjoyable fifteen miles I covered turned out to form the longest outing I’ve achieved in a day since the beginning of August. Outrageous!

Monday saw me return to work and thus I had to walk in the dark again, but this time at the other end of the day. For this one I chose a pond-side route that I’ve not taken in years.

Which brings us to today, when I escaped work a little earlier and repeated Monday’s outing but this time 90% of it was in daylight. It’s definitely a better outing in daylight!

Not a bad week really Smile


  1. Where as I have all the time in the world but am doing a jolly fine impression of a lazy tart!!

  2. Another lazy tart here too...

  3. Hmmmm, as I'm not being lazy at the moment, does that make me just a tart?!